This isn’t the sort of recipe post where I wax lyrical about growing up eating sausage rolls and how ever since I went veggie 14 years ago I’ve struggled to find the perfect replacement.
This is simply me, having finally cracked vegan sausage meat, sharing the recipe, on how to make vegan sausage meat.
I put it inside pastry and made sausage rolls, but you could probably form it into sausage shapes and bake in a Yorkshire pudding for Toad in the Hole too.
I WILL SAY this is a British style sausage meat, it’s herby and earthy and hearty. I’m sorry North America but your sausages are bad. This is a Linda McCartney inspired sausage meat, a Greggs sausage roll inspired sausage meat, a proper British roast sausage meat.
Below are rough estimations of proportions, but I’m a huge believer in taste testing and very rarely measure anything. I’ve tried to include a way to tell what your dish is missing, but taste is obviously a subjective thing. My advice would be to season lightly at first.
Also I used a cheap store bought pastry for my rolls — the majority of them are made with oil and marg not dairy so it’s worth looking in to, if you don’t have time to make puff pastry from scratch.
- 200g chestnuts, peeled, soaked, I used the vacuum sealed ones, they’re fine and cheaper
- 250g mushrooms, I used chestnut because that’s what I had
- Half a large onion, should have used shallots but we all learn from our mistakes
- Three cloves of garlic
- Big glug of white wine
- Dried tarragon (about 1 heaped teaspoon, but this depends on your mushroom — earthier mushrooms need less)
- Salt, pepper, veg oil
- Sprinkle of smoked paprika
- Worcestershire sauce (not all of it is vegan! You need to check!)
- Breadcrumbs (less than half a cup, but depends on mix)
- A frying pan
- A food processor/ chopper/ or the patience of a saint
- Sharp knife
- Chopping board
- Mixing spoon
Ok gather your things, put some TV on and get to work.
- Finely dice the onion and garlic and leave to one side
- Put the mushrooms and chestnuts in the food processor and blitz until they’re very fine chunks. You can also chop with a knife if you don’t have a processor or chopper! Leave to one side
- Put the pan on a medium heat and add a generous glug of oil, enough to coat the pan
- When the oil is warm (not sizzling hot, but enough that you can feel the heat when you hold your hand slightly above the pan) add the onions and garlic
- Gently stir the onions and garlic until they soften, be careful they don’t burn
- Once soft add the mushrooms and chestnut mix and stir
- It should start to smell pretty good at this point and the mushrooms will start to shrivel up and change colour. Once it’s all done this add a big glug of white wine (enough to coat the mix, but not so much that the mix is floating…)
- Stir this around over the heat for a few minutes until the wine starts to bubble
- Top this up with cold water until the mix is fully submersed
- Time to start seasoning!
- Add 4/5 dashes of Worcestershire sauce, a sprinkle of paprika, the tarragon, a generous amount of salt and pepper and stir
- Leave to simmer for a little bit and then taste
- If it doesn’t taste ‘deep’ enough, add more Worcestershire or smoked paprika
- If it doesn’t have a ‘kick’ add more pepper
- If it doesn’t taste rich add more tarragon
- Once you’ve got the balance right, leave the mixture to simmer until all the water is absorbed. You’ll want to stir more frequently towards the end to stop the mix burning
- AT THIS POINT I added the breadcrumbs because I knew I was going to recook the mix and didn’t want them to get soggy. If you’re just serving the meat from the pan then good for you, but add the breadcrumbs before all the water evaporates
- Start by sprinkling a tablespoon of breadcrumbs in and stir. This bit is more tricky because you’re looking for the mix to ‘firm up’. Keep adding until the mix is more crumbly, less sloppy. Take it slow — you can always add more but you can’t take away
- Chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes but for however long until you need it
That’s it. That’s vegan sausage meat. You’re welcome.